Ready to Soar

Yesterday morning at 8 AM, I ate my last McDonald’s sausage and biscuit for a while, upsized my sweet tea, and headed for the DFW airport. I spent the majority of my relatively uneventful day laying around in airports. We left DFW around 3:45 PM, American time. We landed in Houston, found our next terminal, and boarded the plane to Frankfurt about half an hour later. The flight to Frankfurt went by relatively quickly. I watched Moana, then ate Spinach and cheese ravioli, then slept on and off until they turned the cabin lights off and came around for breakfast. For breakfast we had blueberry yogurt and a croissant. We landed in Frankfurt, and that is where the fun began. We crossed the airport to get to the correct terminal, and stopped along the way to get Regan’s ticket. As it turns out, she did not have a connecting flight to Bydgoszcz, or one returning to Frankfurt from Krakow coming home. Dr. McGahan stayed back in Germany with her for the night, and the four of us girls came on. When we boarded the plane in Germany, we were on a bus instead. The bus took us to the runway where we boarded the plane from the ground, which felt pretty presidential.

We met Anna and  Simon at the airport, who put us in a Mercedez-Benz van Taxi to take us back to our dorm. It sounds like we rolled in pretty high class, but in all reality it was probably from the 80’s, all metal inside, and definitely looked like something you see at the beginning of a movie where a European study abroad ends in a missing person case. We made it, though, and our taxi driver was super nice. He didn’t speak any english, so we had to rely mostly on saying things the other would not understand and gesturing with our hands.

Anna met us here at the dorm and helped us to find our rooms. We are each in an individual room with our own bathroom, so it is kind of nice to have a little time to ourselves, and some privacy. I was not fully expecting that. She also showed us the store right across the street. It was fun to be able to walk around looking at the groceries and trying to translate. Also, I needed shampoo, soap, and toothpaste. There didn’t seem to be any comparable brands, so I picked the least sketchy toothpaste I could find, and proceeded to the checkout. I tried to use my card at the checkout. First of all, I couldn’t select anything on the card machine because it was all in Polish, and the cashier did not speak any English. When we finally got to where it gave the amount, all of those items came to $3.3o in American dollars for all of that! (I’ll make up for it in medical expenses when that herbal toothpaste takes its tell…)

Later last night, Lauren and I went on a walk around campus and a little bit of town. We met a few students on campus that explained that there was a week-long event going on at all of the Universities across Poland where students do fun stuff each day. Tonight, they had a competition to see what automobile they could make out of cardboard that would hold at least one person. There was a taxi, a carriage, a helicopter, and a train. It was really neat that their school events would incorporate team work, using their creativity, and using their hands into their fun activities. After we walked for a little while, we ended up in this pizza place close to campus for dinner; however, we ordered Kebabs instead, which is a sandwich. They carved “beef” off this giant log right in front of us, and filled it in a pita bread along with cabbage, purple onions, cucumber, tomato, two sauces, and honestly I don’t know what else. I am not convinced it was Polish, nor am I convinced it was beef, but it was delicious nonetheless. I could not even finish the sandwich, and it along with a drink cost about 3 USD.

Overall, it has been a really good first say settling in. I have noticed/learned a few things:

  • There are a ton of trees here. They are very tall, too. I’m not sure what kind they are, but I spotted one random Aspen in the middle of them, shoutout to Utah.
  • A lot of their cars have really long, skinny, weird looking trailer hitches on them.
  • The cemetery looked overpacked. We then realized they are above-ground burials…
  • The rooftops are village-looking red/brown much like I saw in Germany when I went there. Aside from that, the infrastructure has been surprisingly normal.
  • There was an IKEA and a TJ Maxx! Also, there was no WalMart.
  • I do not know how to spell it, but I learned the greeting, which would be said, “Jing Doe Bray” (roll your R)
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